Broad Institute–ISF Partnership for Cell Circuit Research

The Broad Institute-ISF Partnership for Circuit Research, centered at the Observatory, brings together Broad and Israeli scientists to tackle major challenges in cell circuitry. This program harnesses the expertise of Israeli scientists in computational and systems biology research to enhance and complement the Observatory effort. The program is managed in close partnership with the Israel Science Foundation (ISF).

The program consists of three components:

Collaborative projects (up to 3/year)

The Observatory provides direct funding for collaborative projects involving Israeli and Broad scientists. Collaborative projects will leverage experimental and/or computational expertise in circuitry research, empowering researchers to pursue joint projects in mammalian cells.

Project selection. Projects are proposed jointly by a Broad lab and an Israeli lab to ensure tight collaboration. Selection criteria include combination of scientific excellence, relevance of the research plan to the Observatory mission of circuit research, and appropriate research environment in the Israeli and Observatory labs. A selection committee that includes representatives from the Broad and the Israeli academic community will choose the collaborative projects. Most applications are expected to be for a one-year project, with   the limited possibility of a one-year competitive renewal under appropriate circumstances.

Funding. The available funding will be used to cover costs at the Broad lab and in the Israeli lab, with approximately 50% going to each. Funds will also budget for travel expenses and accommodations for visiting scientists.

At the Second Annual Broad-ISF Cell Circuits Symposium, the Broad Institute-ISF Partnership announced the award of collaborative project funding to three proposals including: (1) Irit Gat-Viks (Tel-Aviv University) and Nir Hacohen (Broad Institute); (2) Ehud Shapiro (Weizmann Institute) and Robert Nicol (Broad Technology Labs); and (3) Itai Yanai (Technion) and Deborah Hung (Broad Institute). 

Postdoctoral training program

This program for outstanding Ph.D. students from Israeli academic institutions will support postdoctoral training at the Broad Institute, with financial incentives to return to Israel as principal investigators. Each fellowship will last for a period of three years on average.

Postdoctoral support. The fellowship provides full salary support, along with full benefits and some research expenses, as well as additional salary support for fellows with children.

Selection. All graduating Ph.D. students from Israeli academic institutions of higher education are eligible to apply but will need to secure an eligible sponsor from the Broad Institute supporting their application prior to nomination. A committee with representatives from the Broad and the Israeli academic community will select candidates.

At the Second Annual Broad-ISF Cell Circuits Symposium, the Broad Institute-ISF Partnership announced the award of two postdoctoral fellowships. Eitan Hoch has received a postdoctoral fellowship to work with Broad deputy director and chief academic officer, David Altshuler and Yehuda Brody has received a postdoctoral fellowship to work with Broad core member, Paul Blainey.

Annual symposium

An annual Cell Circuits Symposium is held each year for five years, beginning in 2013. The location alternates between Israel and Cambridge, MA. Observatory staff and lab members, collaborating labs, and postdocs from the program all participate, as well as additional scientists invited from both the Broad and Israeli communities.

The First Annual Symposium was held in Jerusalem, Israel from June 10-12, 2013.

The Second Annual Symposium was held at the Broad Institute, in Cambridge, MA from June 25-27, 2014.

Broad and Israel scientists, save the date: the Third Annual Symposium will be held in Jerusalem, Israel from June 8-10, 2015.